Trunk kitchen during transition


Hi everyone.

So I anticipate my transition from RV to Van might be slow and arduous. Since it will involve so many steps and my current set up isn’t money efficient when it comes to food, I was wondering if anyone had experience with high-end coolers and how keeping one in the trunk of a car might effect it.

I drive a car daily and sleep in my RV which is parked on the street, I don’t have solar or other reliable means to keep food cold and I’m considering setting up a mini kitchen in my car trunk so I won’t be so tempted to buy meals every day.

Ideally I’d like to keep a diet high in fruits and veggies and I’m not so worried about being able to cook.

RTIC coolers seem like they’re basically Yetis but cheaper…

Thoghts, comments, bits, all things welcome.


Consider looking into ‘Dometic’ a company that specializes in this. They are used and highly recommended by many vanlifers.



There is no need to buy an expensive cooler, a regular one wrapped in a moving blanket is just as effective.

There are a few other worthwhile tricks, that apply to any cooler. Block ice lasts considerably longer than crushed ice. If it is kept in a separate container, your food won’t get wet.

A trunk can get even hotter than the car’s interior. Parking in the shade can make a huge difference.

I am in a van, but I use all of these tricks, and a block of ice will last for about a week. You might have to ask the clerk for the block ice, because what is usually inside is the crushed, but if they have an outdoor ice bin or ice maker, they frequently have the blocks outside.

Some people also line the inside of a cheap cooler with reflectix. Some will also use a towel to take up any empty air space inside the cooler. I don’t personally use either of these last two, but I think they’re worthy of consideration.



I was considering a more high end cooler because of the fact that it’ll be hotter in my trunk than the rest of the car. I was thinking the quality might make up for the extra heat.

And I still plan on doing everything else that was mentioned.

What kind of separate containers do you put ice in when loading a cooler?



I use block ice, so I took a 5 gallon cube style water jug and cut to top off to basically convert it into a bin. It sits on one side of my cooler and the food on the other side.

This should work equally well with the cubed ice, but the cubes just don’t last as long.